Ideal for summertime snacking, watermelons are light, thirst quenching, and fun to eat! But sliced up and ready-to-serve is not the only way to enjoy this sweet nutrient-dense delight. With National Watermelon Day in full swing, it’s time to get creative with this time-honored summer picnic essential.

Watermelon Mint Cooler
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Sweet Watermelon Recipes Your Littles will Love
A great alternative to water, this thirst-quenching drink is both nutritious and delicious. Slushy and sweet, it boasts serious vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. The best part? When your littles call it a night, simply add a bit of vodka to transform it into a much deserved mommy cocktail.

4 cups seedless watermelon chunks
1 ½ cups lemonade
½ cup fresh mint

In a blender, puree the watermelon and lemonade; strain if desired. Stir in the mint and serve over ice.

**For an instant cocktail: Stir in ½ cup vodka or tequila before serving

Watermelon Sorbet
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For a refreshing frozen treat sans the sugar found in ice-cream, scoop up this snack and watch your kids go wild! Think you need a fancy ice-cream maker to achieve this icy masterpiece? Think again! With just a few simple ingredients and easy-to-follow steps, this summer sorbet is all yours.

6 cups watermelon chunks
½ cup sugar
¾ cup water
2 tablespoons lime juice

Combine sugar and water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature, about 45 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour.

Place watermelon and lime juice in a food processor; process until smooth. Set a sieve over a large bowl and press the puree through to remove tiny seeds. Whisk in the sugar syrup.

Pour the watermelon mixture into a shallow metal pan and freeze until ice crystals form around the edges, about 30 minutes. Stir the ice crystals into the center of the pan and return to the freezer; repeat every 20 minutes until all the liquid is frozen.

Serve immediately or transfer to a storage container and let harden in the freezer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Serve in chilled dishes.

Watermelon Grilled Cheese
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Sweet Watermelon Recipes Your Littles will Love
For a kiddo-approved comfort snack ideal for satiating a ravenous little appetite, grilled cheese sandwiches have long been a stand-by. And now, with the addition of watermelon and greens, you can transform a measly little grilled cheese into a culinary delight for even the most sophisticated tot. Warm pressed or grilled, this sammy is a big winner no matter how you slice it.

4 slices watermelon
8 slices 100% whole grain bread
2 tablespoons stone-ground mustard
6 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar cheese divided into 4 equal portions
1 bottle cooking spray
1 ½ cups baby arugula

Place watermelon pieces between paper towels to absorb extra fluid. On each of 4 slices of bread, spread mustard and top with 1 ½ ounces cheese. Top with second slice of bread. On a griddle or Forman grill, spray cooking spray and grill the 4 sandwiches on each side until cheese melts. Remove from griddle, open and place a slice of watermelon and arugula. Close sandwich and cut in half. Serve.

Watermelon Salad
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For a tasty tot-friendly side dish that the whole family will love, serve up this sweet little salad. Delicious and nutritiously light, you’ll crave it all the time.

Feta Cheese
Balsamic Vinegar
Fresh Ground Pepper

Cube watermelon, crumble feta cheese on top, drizzle with balsamic vinegar, and top with fresh ground pepper.

Watermelon Skewers
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Sweet Watermelon Recipes Your Littles will Love
An ideal summertime snack, skewers are fun, easy, and perfect for parties. And with an endless array of combinations, you’ll never grow tired of new and enticing pairings! With watermelon taking center stage during warmer months, we’re absolutely loving these melon-centric skewers accompanied by tomato, feta, and refreshing mint.

2 large heirloom tomatoes, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
3 cups 1-inch watermelon cubes (about 1/4 of a 3-lb. watermelon)
8 ounces of feta cheese, cubed
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
36 (3-inch) wooden skewers

Gently toss together tomatoes and next 7 ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and chill 30 minutes to 1 hour. Thread 1 tomato piece, 1 watermelon cube, and 1 feta cube onto a skewer, and place in a serving bowl. Repeat with remaining skewers. Drizzle with remaining marinade, and serve immediately.

Inspired to whip up one of these sweet treats? Enjoy!

August 03, 2016 — Staci Pearlman

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